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Grateful Dead Music Forum

A place to talk about the music of the Grateful Dead 

 #110323  by Bassman
 Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:22 am
I was wondering if anybody has tried anything other than Ken Smith Slick Rounds and D'Addario Half Rounds. I recently tried Dr Sunbeams and Ken Smith Compressors. The sunbeams are a great string but they lacked some of the punch that the Slicks have. The compressors were cool but weren't as warm as the Slicks. My problem with the Slicks has been the dead, lifeless
low B string. I do like the low B of the Half Rounds. I was thinking of using that with a 4-string set of slicks. The dead low B was a reoccurring problem. Or maybe something else?
Last edited by Bassman on Thu Mar 01, 2012 9:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
 #110324  by Rusty the Scoob
 Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:25 am
What bass are you using and what tone are you going for?

I like the TI flats for 70's Phil and LaBella flats for John Kahn.

Half-Rounds are on my 80's Phil bass and Slick Rounds are on my 90's Phil bass.
 #110329  by Bassman
 Thu Mar 01, 2012 9:24 am
Well I have a Modulus Q5 and I just got an Epiphone Jack Casady. So my thinking is
80's-90's for the Modulus and 70's for the Casady. I like the way you break that down Rusty...very cool. Maybe TI Flats for the Casady bass and stick with Slicks for the Modulus, how are the low B's for you with Slicks?
 #110330  by Rusty the Scoob
 Thu Mar 01, 2012 9:38 am
The Low B sucks with Slicks, exactly as you describe. Some people here have gotten good ones directly from Smith, that seems like the ideal solution. For me, I'm just living with the dead B since it's only my 4th busiest bass.

Defitely try TI flats on the Casady, you won't be disappointed! They're pricey and only come in light-gauge but last a long time. I have Pyramids on my Starfire now (pretty similar to a Casady) and don't really like them.
 #110350  by Bassman
 Thu Mar 01, 2012 3:24 pm
Hey Rusty, I was what gauges on the Slick's do you use. I had been using lights.
 #110357  by zambiland
 Fri Mar 02, 2012 12:48 am
I'm with Rusty on this, except that for roundwounds I use Sunbeams: 30-120. Those get played usually with fingers instead of a pick and I love how responsive and even they are. they also last a pretty good long time.
 #110378  by Bassman
 Fri Mar 02, 2012 9:54 am
I do use the Sunbeams on Czech made Jeff Berlin bass for jazz etc. Great response with the fingers.
 #110380  by Rusty the Scoob
 Fri Mar 02, 2012 10:46 am
You know, the one and only time I tried DR strings I had two break while in the pit orchestra for a musical in college. Never bought another set after that!

I haven't bought roundwounds in quite a while but I used to buy Sadowsky strings. Not a lot of people use them, it seems, but they're great solid strings at a bargain price. They're not fancy or exotic, but intonate well, last a long time, and sound great. I suppose the great sound was partly because I was putting them on a Sadowsky though. :lol:
 #110703  by zambiland
 Wed Mar 07, 2012 8:40 pm
Rusty the Scoob wrote:You know, the one and only time I tried DR strings I had two break while in the pit orchestra for a musical in college. Never bought another set after that!
Wow, that's the opposite experience I had! When I was looking for a 6 string set, I tried just about everything out there. The Foderas sounded great, but I broke 2 within 3 sets. Next was DR and I think I've broken just a couple ever since (from 1999). They seem to last forever.

Those were the only brands I played where the whole bass felt like one instrument instead of a 4 string with a high and low string tacked on from an alternate universe.
 #111087  by wolftigerrosebud
 Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:22 pm
Uh... maybe this is a given and totally unnecessary to say, but I'd go with the TIs. I've tried all the other strings everyone's talking about here, and Thomastiks sound better, play better, and last longer than all of them... They have almost as much brightness as the half-rounds. They're still flats, but they're kind of like the best of both worlds. They really sing like no other bass string I've tried.